I am hoping everyone is experiencing the sun rays on their face as I am right now. I am going through a period of transition in my life at the moment, just as Mother Earth is, with summer coming our way (or a change of seasons no matter where you are). I feel the need to look around me and be grateful for what I have, be grateful for what Mother Earth gives us. A lot of our needs can be met when we turn to Mother Earth and our relations in nature. We are all connected and can help one another. I find much solace when I go for a walk in nature, when I reconnect with my cousins the trees and hear my siblings the birds sing. It is a beautiful world when one is surrounded by trees and moss, or water. So today the focus of this post, is on natural jewelry, jewelry made with elements found in nature. For it, I turn to Etsy (if you know me you know I buy my jewelry at Pow wows or fairs directly from the artists or on a few trusted sites like Etsy). So please check out the Natural jewelry page on Etsy right now!
To learn more abut Etsy and its philosophy, see this post where I discuss it.
Etsy Holiday Shopping Guide: Gifts from the Indigenous people of the land
If you are like me, you are starting to think about your holiday shopping (I prefer to use “holiday” instead of “Christmas” which has a religious connotation and meaning). And if you are like me, you are all about online shopping. Because really, who wants to battle crowds at the shopping center. And that’s if you can even find parking… So yes, online shopping all the way! And if you know this site, even a little bit, you know one of my favorite places to shop, for literally anything, is Etsy! Yay Etsy!! I just love the concept of Etsy. A place where artists can sell directly to the buyers, where they get a platform to showcase their work and where buyers actually get to interact with them. There are just so many options on Etsy that you can find something for every single person you know. From your mother, to your spouse, to your boss, teacher, mentor or even your neighbor’s dog (I kid you not!).
Featured artist: David Fierro and his Native American drums
This past week was a special week for me for a few reasons. One of them was the raising of a totem pole a block away from my office, for the survivors and residents of an area of Vancouver called “downtown eastside” (DTES). The area is also known as “Skidrow” for its high incidence of crime (including a high incidence of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women), homelessness and drug use. Definitively not an area easy to live in day in and day out. However, it is where I work and I would not change that for anything. Because there is so much beauty in the people living there. A lot of trauma yes but also such beauty and resilience. Which is what the totem pole represents. I look forward to visiting it when I need strength and peace. See it and read about it on my Facebook page or learn more about the meaning and history of totem poles here.
Drum by David Fierro
Last week was also the week that I finally got my own drum! So let’s talk about drumming, the meaning of a Native American drum and the wonderful and talented artist who made mine: David Fierro.
VIDA: A place for unique designs by a Metis artist, so much to love!
Feathers & Medicine tote by Carol Rose
Today I wish to share with you a site I discovered and an artist I recently had the pleasure of meeting. Indeed, if you know my site, you know that I always prefer to buy my scarves, my jewelry, my moccasins and my clothes directly from the artist. As much as possible. And today I want to feature Metis artist Carol Rose. I ran into Carol at a Pow wow I attended a few weeks ago. Her work was displayed (paintings and cards) and she walked up to me looking at her work as I was saying aloud: this is just incredible! And her work IS incredible!! It is honestly unlike anything I have ever seen. Her technique of tight dots making a bigger designs is just phenomenal. And that is just part of her work! She has many gorgeous and peaceful looking designs. But before we get into her work, let’s talk about the website she sells her work on: VIDA.
Difference makes us but…..in the end we are all related
How’s everyone doing? As I attended a Pow wow not too long ago, I feel fantabulous! I love Pow wows and I am sure you have seen some of my posts about them. The energy of the dancers and the drums, the atmosphere, the artists selling their beautiful products. I love it all! Different nations all unique but coming together to celebrate mother Earth, the music and traditions of the ancestors. And this made me think: are we all different or are we all the same? Well I think it is neither. I think, as the Etsy campaign says Difference Makes Us but! We are also all one. We all have a certain uniqueness but in the end we are all related. So inspired by the the motto of the campaign “celebrate all our un-similarities” I thought I would reflect on what makes me “me” and what do I identify with.
How’s everyone doing on this last weekend of summer? So today I thought I would discuss one of my favorite lighter topic: Etsy and its wonderful artists! For those not familiar with Etsy, where have you been! Just kidding… Etsy is a wonderful platform, a website where individual artists can sell their handmade products. Each of them unique and one of a kind pieces. I buy a lot from Etsy, might it be sage sticks, jewelry, dreamcatchers, purses, you name it. And every time I wear my Etsy products, I get stopped by people and get compliments on them. If you like to buy directly from the artist (which I am all about, hence why I buy most of my stuff on Etsy or directly from the artists at Pow wows or Native fairs), this is for you. So let’s look at some wonderful Canadian Native art or Etsy’s Made in Canada products 🙂
How is everyone doing in this wonderful Spring time? I hope you are able to enjoy sunshine and nature blooming wherever you are 🙂 I know I am enjoying it on the Canadian West Coast. I have been thinking about what I could be writing about. And Hopi Kachina (Katsina) dolls popped in my mind. Yes weird things pop in my mind 😉 I have posted pictures of Kachina dolls on this site’s Facebook page in the past and I just find them so beautiful. And as we will see, they are also meaningful and spiritual.
So let’s take a look at the Hopi Kachina dolls, their origins, meaning and their beauty.
Pow wow time: My experience and why I enjoy them so much
Everyone on the dance floor!
Happy Easter to all! It is another sunny Spring day on the Canadian West Coast. Nature is awake and beautiful and love is in the air 🙂 Needless to say, I am feeling good! Before I go to a friend’s place for Easter dinner, I thought I would talk about something that does make me very happy: Pow wow time 🙂 If you follow this site’s Facebook page, you probably have seen that I went to a Pow wow last night. If not, click on the link I just inserted and go check out the videos I posted! This post will focus mostly on the Pow wow I attended last night. To learn more about the Pow wow ceremony, I strongly encourage you to read my previous article explaining it. But for now, it is Pow wow time!
West Coast button blankets: gorgeous and meaningful
Button Blanket by Nancee Wood
How are you all doing? Over here in BC, Canada, I am enjoying a long weekend, as tomorrow is BC Family day. If you follow my Facebook page, you know I attended Hobiyee, the Nisga’a nation New Year celebration 2 days ago (article to come on Hobiyee, stay tuned). And it was just awesome and breathtaking. As soon as I came in and heard the singing and drumming, I had chills. And I had not even seen the dancers yet!! And boy were they ever spectacular. Many of them were wearing the West Coast button blanket, hence why I am writing about it today. I really wish you could have seen those beautiful blankets in person as the pictures do not do them justice at all. I think my mouth was open the whole time, just in awe. I live on the West Coast and I am fortunate enough to see button blankets quite frequently. But I had never seen so many at once and so many ornate ones. Just stunning! So let’s talk about and look at some West Coast button blankets!
How is everybody’s New Year so far? I do wish you all many moons of happiness, love and tranquility 🙂 I know I am praying for all of this myself. So here we are in 2016, this site being almost a year old! How exciting!! I have posted over 100 articles here about a variety of topics. I have had guest writers and partnerships in writing. I have discussed the traditions, the history, the beauty and trauma of the Native American people, of the Indigenous people of the land. I have also introduced a few art pieces, Native artists as well as reviewed products I bought. And here we are and I still have ideas 🙂 As I have mentioned a few times, I live in the Pacific Northwest, on the West Coast of Canada. I am not only surrounded by the Plains and Prairie people but also by the Pacific Northwest culture. Or cultures, I should say. And one of the most beautiful designs in my eyes is the Chilkat (you pronounce the “t” at the end) pattern. Chilkat weaving is just a gorgeous form of art that stands out. Let’s then explore the origins of the Native American Chilkat weaving.